Tom Russell songs have been recorded by such icons as Johnny Cash, Dave Van Ronk, Jerry Jeff Walker, Doug Sahm, Joe Ely, Nanci Griffith, Iris Dement, and Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, among others. No less than Lawrence Ferlinghetti, the legendary poet, has said that he shares “a great affinity with Tom Russell’s songs, for he is writing out of the wounded heart of America.”
At a time when rootsy rock was fading in favor of punk-edged bands such as the Ramones, Talking Heads, and Blondie, Forbert’s folk-pop “Romeo’s Tune” hit #11 on the charts and brought him into the international spotlight. Critics and the public embraced his melodic and lyrical styles, a more traditional sound among the post-disco punk and rock of the late ’70s and early ’80s.
Joey Hebdo’s style, “Adventure-Folk,” is unspoiled and unforgettable. A Columbus native, Joey and his music were shaped through the merging of Lebanese culture with suburban America and Appalachian paradise. His diversity was inevitable, as he drew his influences from Robert Plant, Andrew Bird, The Temptations, the Beatles, and, of course, his grandfather.
SpeakEasy is a quintet playing in the music style of Django Reinhart and Stephan Grappelli. The music ranges from the Swing Standards of the 30’s and 40’s to Blues, Latin and original music. They have presented concerts at Festivals, Colleges and other venues around Central Ohio, and the USA since 2009.
An accomplished, versatile musician, Colin commands the stage with both his guitar prowess and passionate singing. He is equally at home and engaging playing both acoustic and electric styles. As a slide player, Colin’s facility at both lap and bottleneck styles as well as his formidable fingerpicking skills are impressive.
Over 40 years since they began playing together at weekly jam sessions in Ben Eldridge’s Bethesda, Maryland basement, The Seldom Scene have become one of the single greatest contributors to the progression of bluegrass while setting a new standard and attracting new audiences to the genre.
The 3 Speeds perform as 3 Speed Sleigh, their Christmas alter egos. They tear fuzz-drenched holes in old carols without replacing the divots. And should auld acquaintance be forgot, they put new words to classic glam and punk tunes. They roast some chestnuts and open fire on classic rock ’n’ roll Xmess songs. Clad in their Santanic finery and garage rock whinery, they’ll burn the Yule log at both ends.
Deuce ‘n a Quarter is fronted by the strong voice and wailing harp of Brian Peters. He is backed by one of the tightest rhythm sections in Mid-Ohio with Steve Perakis on bass, Andre Scott on drums. Matched by the electrifying guitar of Jeffrey Allen, and the smooth keys of John Sipher, their rich sound of original music and classic covers is treated like an old friend, as they faithfully add to the musical expressions of their many legendary influences.
Shawna Corder brings her vocal talents back to Natalie’s for a special Christmas edition of her Tribute to Eva Cassidy show, featuring her all-star band. Eva’s popularity has grown since her passing and she has become a household name with the release her versions of Over the Rainbow, Honeysuckle Rose, Danny Boy and many, many other tunes from the American songbook.
The Strung Up bluegrass band has been making high energy bluegrass music in Central Ohio for nearly a decade and they are just hitting their stride! Together their sound is unique, traditional, energetic and soothing. The band bends boundaries between second generation and traditional bluegrass, while including classic country, folk and even some modern day troubadour music into their always entertaining sets.
A Celtic Christmas with The Kells will feature a number of traditional Christmas songs performed by this outstanding group of musicians. The Kells play traditional Irish music with a genuine passion and a sincere sense of purpose. They pour their hearts into playing lively jigs, spirited reels and haunting airs with songs that reach deep into the moral and emotional part of man’s nature.
Sirens is formed around the duo of Kay Harris and Molly Pauken, two of Ohio’s most sought after studio and live-performance musicians. Sirens music is all about the unique melody, the expression through lyric & voice and the texture of acoustic guitar & bass coming together to create unique but timeless pop songs.
The music of Billie Holiday tells deeply human stories of love and romance; sorrow and heartbreak. It takes us to places we know all too well and somehow leaves us feeling better for having had the experience. This evening of music will honor Billie’s jazz legacy by revisiting some of her great classics spanning her recording career from the 1930’s through the 1950’s.
Now in our fifth year, Songwriter Showcase presents the finest national and regional singer-songwriters. Our host, Eric Gnezda, is an award-winning songwriter and creator of the American Public Television series, Songs at the Center, which airs in more than 130 cities across America, and features many of the artists who appear on our stage.
Jazz fusion group FLIPPO, joined by Kay Harris, Ron Jenkins, and Dan Rowan, presents a special year end “Best of FLIPPO” show featuring their amazing tributes to Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, and Joni Mitchell, along with performances of some of their favorite compositions.
Bring in the New Year in style with Teeny Tucker and her full 7 piece band for an evening of great music and celebration. Natalie’s will open for normal business at 4 pm, and seating for the New Year’s Eve Celebration will begin at 8:30 pm, with the show beginning at 10:00 pm. Of course, there will be a champagne toast (compliments of Natalie’s) at midnight, and party favors for all.
Toronzo Cannon has become one of Chicago’s most recognized and most popular bluesmen through the sheer force of his music, his songs, his live charisma, and maybe most impressively, his passion for what he is doing. He’s played the Chicago Blues Festival on nine separate occasions, most recently as a main stage headliner.
John Nemeth, one of the greatest soul bluesman of our time, is the winner of the Blues Foundation Soul Blues Artist of 2014 and Best Soul Blues Album last year. He and his killer band will be serving up hot and tasty Memphis Soul Stew for a night you will not want to miss.
From houses of worship to houses of blues, Ruthie Foster has always been a rafter-rattler. And with a soul-filled voice honed in Texas churches, she can move audiences to tears or ecstasy — sometimes in a single song. Her last three albums, The Truth According to Ruthie Foster, Let It Burn, and Promise of a Brand New Day, moved the Recording Academy to deliver Best Blues Album Grammy nominations.
With a career spanning forty years, award-winning soul, blues and R&B vocalist/harmonicist/songwriter Curtis Salgado is a one-of-a-kind talent whose music is as compelling as his story. From co-fronting The Robert Cray Band to leading his own band (and recording nine solo albums) to helping transform John Belushi into “Joliet” Jake Blues to touring the country with Steve Miller and Santana, he is a true musical giant. NPR calls him “a blues icon” with a “huge voice.”